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Murkowski Works to Give Veterans Twin-Tracks for Duty, Employment

Senator Co-sponsors Troop Talent Act to Smooth Transition to “Perfect Fits” in Private Sector

WASHINGTON, D.C. – With the jobless rate for America’s veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan nearly two percentage points higher than the national average, Senator Lisa Murkowski is joining forces with a bipartisan group of her Senate colleagues in co-sponsoring S. 700, the Troop Talent Act of 2013 to empower the nation’s men and women in uniform as they return stateside and begin looking for work.

“Alaska has more veterans per capita than any other state in the nation – many of whom are coming back to a difficult work environment and trying to enter the job market without fully leveraging their unique skill-sets,” said Murkowski.  “Congress must continue to step up and support those who’ve served us, and the Troop Talent Act creates a clear and direct path to connect these highly-trained and well-qualified Americans to positions they are perfect fits for.”

The legislation creates a dual-track process for military personnel as they serve by keeping them regularly updated as to how their responsibilities and expertise fit in with different employment possibilities, by ensuring they are ready for credentialing/licensing for various industries, and by honing in on particular skills and duties in growing sectors of the job market.

The Troop Talent Act of 2013 would:

  • Improve translation of military skillsets to civilian credentials or licenses by providing more information to servicemembers – early and often – throughout their military careers about the path to earning a civilian credential to match their military occupational specialty training.
     
  • Prevent credential fraud by establishing strict standards for courses or programs that guarantee a credential after successful completion.
     
  • Increase access to high-demand career fields for servicemembers by expanding the current Department of Defense Pilot Program on credentialing to include the field of information technology and matching the skills of servicemembers with one of the fastest-growing industries.

The Troop Talent Act’s co-sponsors include Senators Max Baucus (D-MT), Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) and Tim Kaine (D-VA), and it has already received the support of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA).

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